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The Death of Kim Jong Il – a comment by Professor Arne Westad

Westad, Arne (2011) The Death of Kim Jong Il – a comment by Professor Arne Westad. International Affairs at LSE (21 Dec 2011). Website.

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The news of Kim Jong-il’s death have been received with hopefulness in the West and with a certain sense of dread in East Asia. While Western policy-makers first a foremost saw Kim as the tyrannical head of a despotic state, a monster who mistreated his own population while himself living in luxury, an increasing number of Asians came to view him, in all his grotesqueness, as a guarantor for some form of stability on the Korean peninsula. For the latter, it was hard to imagine any change that would be – at least in the short run – for the better. So great is the fear of the consequences of a North Korean collapse in the region that even Kim’s belated turn to China was seen as a plus by other countries in the region, in the vague hope that Beijing would help steer North Korean foreign policy along a smoother course.

Item Type: Online resource (Website)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2011 The Author(s)
Divisions: IGA: LSE IDEAS
Subjects: J Political Science > JQ Political institutions Asia
Date Deposited: 21 Jun 2017 12:06
Last Modified: 16 May 2024 06:37

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